Monday, April 14, 2014

F is for Film

Today in the ABCs of Photography:

F is for Film

Filma thin flexible strip of cellulose coated with a photographic emulsion, used to make negatives and transparencies

Yes, film! At Foto Care, we have a lot of customers that still shoot film, which we love! Film, though somewhat of a dying medium, is important to understanding the history and aesthetics of photography. But, it has been making a bit of a comeback in recent years. 

There are so, so many different kinds of film out there, from black and white or color, instant film, 35mm, 120mm, 8x10", etc. The vast variety of film available is one reason why it has been coming back in style. Fujifilm's Instax cameras, for example, are fairly inexpensive, fun and a bit quirky, and the instant film for the cameras is small and comes in a number of funky frames (if a plain, white border isn't your thing). Also, note the Impossible Project. After Polaroid had shut down the last remaining plants producing the film, a few Polaroid employees set out to bring Polaroid film back to life. With partial funding from Kickstarter, Impossible products are thriving! 

There are some photography schools around the country are still teaching students how to shoot with film cameras, process their own film and print images right in the darkroom. Because of this movement in teaching the classics, students are learning about the unmatched quality that film can offer, giving film a fighting chance to stick around (at least a little bit longer). 

So, why film? As mentioned above, a lot of the traditional film out there, meaning 35mm all the way up to 8X10 (and larger), that just has that quality about it. The sharpness, the color; there's a reason why it has stuck around this long. Also, there's a nostalgic fondness for film. Old family photo albums filled with snapshots from Kodak Brownies and even those silly disposable cameras that you bought at the drugstore and had processed for you. I mean, what a special moment when you come across a photograph of a long, lost relatives in old sepia tone?! 

We're doing what we can to keep film alive. So, if you're looking for film, ask us! We carry Kodak, Fujifilm and Ilford, as well as Impossible Project